Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE KING'S SHIPS, by CAROLINE S. SPENCER



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THE KING'S SHIPS, by            
First Line: God hath so many ships upon the sea!
Last Line: This deep is but the hollow of his hand.
Subject(s): Boats; Courts & Courtiers; God; Sailing & Sailors; Ships & Shipping; War


GOD hath so many ships upon the sea;
His are the merchantmen that carry treasure,
The men-of-war, all bannered gallantly,
The little other boats, and barks of pleasure.
On all this sea of time there is not one
That sailed without the glorious name thereon.

The winds go up and down upon the sea,
And some they lightly clasp, entreating kindly,
And waft them to the port where they would be,
And other ships they buffet long and blindly.
The cloud comes down on the great sinking deep,
And on the shore the watchers stand and weep.

And God hath many wrecks within the sea;
Oh, it is deep! I look in fear and wonder;
The Wisdom throned above is dark to me,
Yet it is sweet to think his care is under;
That yet the sunken treasure may be drawn
Into his storehouse -- when the sea is gone.

So I, that sail in peril on the sea
With my beloved, whom the waves may cover,
Say, God hath more than angel's care of me,
And larger share than I in friend and lover.
Why weep ye so, ye watchers on the land?
This deep is but the hollow of his hand.





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